June 12, 2012
The decision came as a result of a legal tactic by Russian homosexual activists, who asked for a century’s worth of permits using a loophole in the law that places no time limit on such requests. Activists say they were seeking to provoke a denial of all the permits so that they could file a complaint of “discrimination” in the European Court of Human Rights. They asked for permits from March 2012 through May 2112, amounting to a total of 102.
Moscow authorities did not issue a decision, but simply sent a letter to the activists outlining the proper procedure for making such requests. The activists, led by Nikolay Alexeyev, pushed their case based on the 15-day time limit for a response required by law. However, a city district court ruled that the failure of the city administration to issue the permits was legal, a decision now upheld on appeal.
The activists may be hoping that the number of denials will result in a larger monetary penalty than the $41,300 fine imposed by the European Court of Human Rights in 2010 for earlier permit denials. The Moscow city government has defied that ruling, continuing to prohibit the marches year after year, and arresting those who have attempted to demonstrate.
“Our appeals are turned down time after time, and Strasbourg calls these decisions unlawful,” said Alexeyev. “Time passes, we ask for a new action, and we are rejected again. This time we want to challenge the ban on prospective gay pride parades in Strasbourg.”
Opposition to homosexual propaganda in Russia is shared by the country’s major religious groups, as well as the vast majority of citizens, according to opinion polls.
A poll conducted this year by state-run pollster VTsIOM, showed 86 percent of 1,600 respondents nationwide said they supported a ban on the promotion of homosexual relationships. A 2010 poll found that 74 per cent of Russians said homosexuals are “morally dissolute or deficient” and believe that homosexuality is “an amoral mental deviation.”